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Frogs into Princes: Neuro Linguistic Programming [Paperback]

Richard Bandler
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Badly Edited, but Incredibly Smart Jan. 6 2012
Format:Paperback
You may have heard of NLP, but if you haven't it's not your fault: Neuro Linguistic Programming (fittingly) has been simmering below the surface of the public consciousness for a few decades now. NLP is the study of how our minds use, interpret and process language and thought. This seemingly geeky subject turns out to be incredibly fun and useful, if you can figure it out. Using NLP in your day to day life effectively is kinda like the 'stop the bullets in mid-air' scene in The Matrix. Yes, I'm talking about hypnosis. Buckle up.

To start, I found the title 'Frogs into Princes' (though obscure to the casual Barnes and Noble shopper) brilliant in what this book is attempting to do. As any Westerner reading this will immediately understand, the reference is to many a fairy tale about a princess's relationship with a shapeshifting frog (in some versions, the princess would turn a frog into a prince with her kiss). Presumably, there is supposed to be a lesson in there about how looks can be deceiving (don't judge a book by its cover etc), but there's more to it than that. The writers of this book, esteemed NLP researchers and pioneers Richard Bandler and John Grinder, were therapists. This book is actually a transcription of a three day course given to NLP Students who wanted to use the ideas to treat and heal psychologically damaged patients. The idea is that if you can change the way people see the world, you can give them a better outlook, and they'll go back to being healthy happy productive members of society. Sound crazy? What do you think Tony Robbins has been doing for the last 30 years?

Okay, let's dig in: Neuro Linguistic Programming (in laymans terms: using language to train/encode the mind) is the process of talking someone (eg.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bright Alternatives on Mind and NLP March 6 2010
Format:Paperback
This was the first book I read from R. Bandler about NLP.
To me it was fantastic, techniques were easy to understand and apply.

When I was 22 years old still looking for a door to enlightenment I thought it would be good idea improve myself by using NLP.

I learned and use those techniques in almost any of my habits, wishes, desires, thoughts...
What amazed me was that I could do it by myself, I didn't need a therapist or psychologist, or any kind of " profissional-ist"... I could read and apply most of the techniques in there.

NLP is non-orthodox method, I mean, if you are looking for Eric Berne, Young, Adler, Reich... you will not find it here. But if you are looking for fun, creativity, auto development I recoment this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
This book is a transcript of a three-day training delivered By Richard Bandler and John Grinder in the 1970's. It provides useful insights into their thinking and the basic elements of many NLP techniques. I believe many current NLP Practitioners who use the 'packaged' NLP scripts would benefit from understanding the basic underlying structure and processes presented in this book.

In a way, this book pre-dates techniques and encourages the practitioner to rely on their sensory acuity, anchoring, process elicitation, etc. without worrying which technique to use. For the reader just starting out, having a good introductory NLP book available as a reference would be useful as some of the discussion may leave the novice wondering.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book March 16 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I love this book. Although I read the ones following it first, this book gives the basis for the following books. The writing style of a transcript from a teaching seminar makes it easy to see Grinder and Bandler explaining the processes and how to use them.
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Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  51 reviews
194 of 207 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An NLP Trainer's review of the book that began NLP ... Aug. 2 2000
By Joseph Riggio - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
For what it is this book is a 10, and it's a hoot to read as well! Even though it's now over 20 years old this is the first (and best-IMHO) book introducing the still cutting edge technology of human communication and cognition - Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP™). As far fetched a claim as it may seem, this is surely a seminal book in the field of human communication, linguistics, perception, cognition and psychology. The impact of NLP™ is present in all of these fields, often with more than a little kicking and yelling. After reading the book you're sure to understand why - Bandler and Grinder hold very little about traditional approaches and academic thinking as sacred. Although it's actually about a shift in the paradigm of how change can and does occur, it sometimes reads more like an exploration into the world of Svengali like magic and illusion. The material is presented in the form of a transcript of a live training superbly edited by Steve Andreas. The book is an example of 'doing' NLP™ as opposed to 'describing' it. It puts you in the training as Richard and John present it. As the editor of the book states in the forward, keep your mind open as you read because the authors are more often then not doing what they're describing. You'll want to read it with your eyes open - sometimes more easily said then done, since what the authors are doing is often presented in hypnotically engaging language. I've talked to more than one person who kept finding themselves waking up a few hours after having read through a few pages in this book. It is best to read this book as you would a novel, continuing through to the end, rather than trying to figure out or understand an individual section before moving on. The material is written is such a way as to resolve itself as you read. This is an example of "nested loops" a teaching technique Bandler and Grinder use extensively. However you get through it, in the end you'll find your thinking about thinking changed, and the journey as well worthwhile as the destination. As they say themselves, this book has nothing to do with theory or even the truth about things - instead it's "all about what works." --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
93 of 100 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy It And Let Your Reality Improve! Oct. 10 2001
By Michael L. Emery - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I first read this book waaaay back in 1981, when a neighbor gave me a copy. And even today, in the new millinium, it is as cutting -edge as it was back then. It is THE book to get started on in learning NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming)which, simply put, is teaching yourself better communication. But instead of just being about better communication with others, it goes to the source, better communication with YOURSELF first. I don't mean positive thinking, I'm talking about PRECISE thinking. The more precise and clear you can make your thinking, the more clear and precise you can be understood. Think about that last time you had a bad day, and it seemed as if one crummy thing after another happened. Chances are what REALLY happened was that you were talking TO YOURSELF in negative terms ("why can't I...?") which gave your brain NEGATIVE things to focus on, resulting in NEGATIVE things being the reality you had that day. How interested are you to learn the steps that will not only forever improve those "bad" days, but will start you on a path to becoming someone you always thought you wanted to be, but just never knew how to find yourself? Begin here....but please don't stop here.
Other Bandler/Grinder books I give 5 stars to are "Trance-Formations" and "Using your Brain - For a Change" and "Patterns of the Hypnotic Techniques of Milton H. Erickson, M.D." (Vols 1 & 2)
That's My Opinion, But You're Welcome To It
89 of 99 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars frogs into princes June 7 2007
By P. Helton - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book is a little hard to get into because it is essentially a transcript of a Seminar that Richard and John put on to discuss their views on Neuro-Linguistic Programming to other therapists... These are two of the founders of NLP and it was written in 1979, a time when NLP was trying to establish itself in the therapeutic community. This is readily apparent by the stabs the authors make at existing paradigms. The book does not mention which author is talking so it is difficult to get a grasp of who`s viewpoints are whoms, so it is assumed that both authors are in agreement with the concepts presented. If you get out of the mindset of expecting the concept of NLP being presented in an organized easy to understand manner, then one can glean some interesting information and pearls from this book that I will share.

The authors refer to themselves as modelers. Meaning they are masters of modeling others behaviors:

" We pay very little attention to what people say and a great deal of attention to what they do...The function of modeling is to arrive at descriptions which are useful....We're not offering you something that is true just things that are useful"

They take a certain pride in separating themselves apart from other branches of therapy in that most of the other fields "focus on truth and may or may not get results." However, they re-establish their status in the therapy field by modeling some of the greatest therapists in existence like Virginia Satir and Milton Erickson. There is included a therapy session by Satir with the authors explaining how she intuitively employs NLP by matching the client rather than trying to make the client match them.

They came up with the concept of "if what you do does not work, do something else," which you would think was intuitive. They go on to criticize other therapists who label their clients as "resistant" and accuse the non-NLP therapist that they are shifting the blame of poor results to the client when they should simply be trying something else. To cement this concept they offered discuss an experiment from the eighties where the B.J Skinner did work with rats and mazes. One day, he decided to add humans to the experiment. Over several weeks he performed the experiment where he taught the rats or human to run thru a maze for the reward of cheese or a 5 dollar bill found at the end of the maze. Of course, he noticed the humans were quicker learners as expected. Further results were counter intuitive. When he tried to extinguish the behavior by removing the reward found at the end of the maze, it became interesting. After multiple attempts the rats no longer attempted to run the maze...."however, the humans never stopped!! They are still there! They break into the lab at night looking for 5 dollar bills at the end of the maze." That is the peculiar trait about human beings. "If they find something they can do that does not work, they do it again." Thus the concept of "if what you do does not work, do something else." I could not help but to have visions of Las Vegas and people putting their life savings into the slot machines looking for the reward at the end of the maze.

There was an intriguing sentence on matching where they discussed representational systems and said that to establish good rapport one merely had to match the predicated words of the other person's representational system. But if you want to alienate the other person you could deliberately mismatch the predicates. This skill could be very useful in situation where one would not want to converse like on an airplane.

Another pearl was their view on what words mean. "Words are triggers that tend to bring into your consciousness certain parts of your experience and not others." So you cannot hear a word without having an associative experience. Since everyone's experience is different. everyone's perception of a word will be slightly different. This is called slippage. There is a slippage between the words and a persons experience as well as a slippage between two peoples corresponding experience for the same word. This is their explanation for maps of reality although they do not distinctly label it as such.

The authors went into a great deal of detail explaining to the audience how to attain visual acuity with respect to the eye motions indicating a person's representational system that they are using. They did this with putting several audience members on stage and then asking them questions to see exactly what their body language and eye directions were. They went into greater detail with assessing one audience member as " leads visually, represents kinesthetically and then has an auditory reference system check which tells him that his feelings are valid" I think part of this detail was to impress their audience with complexity rather than present an easily duplicatable system.

They do offer hope in their view of humans. They see people as having only a few strategies. That is why they are good at some things but not others. But by increasing the number of strategies available to a person, they claim that "if any human can do something then so can you." I do agree with this statement as I attribute my life's successes on the ability to successfully model other people's behaviors.

Bandler and Grinder have a unique definition of conscious and unconsciousness. They state that the conscious is defined as whatever you are aware of at that moment in time and subconscious is everything else" Which puts a more tangible definition of what the unconscious mind is, as most definitions quantify it as a limitless entity.

During the seminar the author made a large arc arm movement that startled people. He explained the startled feeling by saying that the hand motion unconsciously told people to process what he was saying auditorily and that it knocked any visual based pictures out of the air. He stated that "if you can determine what a persons lead and representational systems are, you can package information in a way that is irresistible for them" He goes on to say that "the meaning of communication is the response that you get, if you are not getting what you want, change what you are doing." This is similar to Genie Labourde's viewpoint.

The authors site a good explanation for the NLP dictate to not use a negative when discussing a desired outcome. They refer to a child who is instructed "not to fall down." In order for the child to understand the sentence they have to refer to their internal representation of falling down. That internal representation will result in the behavior the parent is trying to prevent. Positive instructions "like pay attention to your balance and move slowly" can yield a more positive outcome.

Concepts from earlier books by the same authors, The Structure of Magic, were reviewed with respect to the metamodel of eliciting more specific responses to questions. The authors demonstrated several examples of metamodel questions. They said to do NLP well one must have mastery over the metamodel questions, otherwise techniques will be sloppy. "Metamodel questions are the questions that really give you the appropriate information immediately"

The second day of the book discusses mirroring and crossover mirroring, gives some example of anchoring and collapsing of anchors and past experiences that the authors had with clients. Overall not as interesting as the fist day as they are merely trying to show the therapists how they have used NLP in their practices.

The third day, discussed states and several organizing principles of states which we find useful. The first principle is that it is better to have choice than no choice. It is the therapist's job to broaden the clients' choices. The second is the notion of unconscious choice. This is where a behavior is exhibited because it fulfills a need even though it is counter to a person's stated conscious desire. For example, overeating as a way of compensating for a failing marriage. The third in that people already have the resources they need in order to change, if they can be helped to use them in the appropriate context. Again, the bally wick of the successful therapist. The forth is that each and every single piece of behavior has a positive function in some context and there is a difference between the behavior and the intention. So when someone exhibits bizarre behavior that is a good signal to you that the person is responding to something that is not available to the typical observers' sensory experience. They are responding to some internal represented thought that is giving them an intended positive experience even though they will not consciously admit it. This is evident when examining unhealthy behaviors that fulfill a secondary gain of some sort. Examples are given on how to reframe these unhealthy behaviors by resolving the conflict between conscious desires and the program that provides a secondary gain. Reframing is accomplished by having the client's sub-personalities talk the situation out and come up with alternative behaviors that serve the whole. If the behavior does not change or reverts, that is a sign that the new kind of behavior was not as effective at fulfilling the sub personalities desires in a congruent way and the discussion must begin anew. Several real life examples are given.

Over all a deep book for my first introduction to NLP. I found myself breezing it rather than reading it because of its more sophisticated intended audience of therapists. After studying Genie Labourde's book a lot of what Bandler and Grinder discussed made more sense than it did when I re-read the book with more knowledgeable eyes. However, I could not shake the feeling that they could have presented the information in a different way and it would have made more sense to all audiences and not been so dry. I got the impression that they were fulfilling the publishers request for this years books and that they didn't write one. The way they spoke in the book, they seemed to be the cowboys of their field. This is evident in the way they buck traditional therapeutics themes and their sometimes irreverent examples of their own therapy experiences with other clients. But sometimes it takes cowboys to rope the existing therapeutic community into seeing a new concept. Bandler and Grinder are perceived to be some of the godfathers of NLP, as such, I am glad to have experienced the book, but aside from its historic perspective, I do no recommend it to the novice NLP student
59 of 64 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great introduction to Neuro-Linguistic Programming Oct. 8 2002
By iOS Software Developer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
If you plan to start an NLP Practitioner certification class soon, or if you just want to learn more about NLP, then I recommend to you this fine work by Bandler and Grinder. Though NLP is more advanced now and includes topics not covered in this book (e.g., Submodalities), Frogs into Princes will teach you about the power of NLP to transform people's lives. You will get an overview of how NLP enables you to change your thoughts and emotions easily. Buy it and open up a new world of understanding yourself and others.
43 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A licensed NLP trainer reviews the seminal book on NLP. Jan. 2 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
For what it is this book is a 10, and it's a hoot to read as well! Even though it's now over 20 years old this is the first (and best-IMHO) book introducing the still cutting edge technology of human communication and cognition - Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP™). As far fetched a claim as it may seem, this is surely a seminal book in the field of human communication, linguistics, perception, cognition and psychology. The impact of NLP™ is present in all of these fields, often with more than a little kicking and yelling. After reading the book you're sure to understand why - Bandler and Grinder hold very little about traditional approaches and academic thinking as sacred. Although it's actually about a shift in the paradigm of how change can and does occur, it sometimes reads more like an exploration into the world of Svengali like magic and illusion. The material is presented in the form of a transcript of a live training superbly edited by Steve Andreas. The book is an example of 'doing' NLP™ as opposed to 'describing' it. It puts you in the training as Richard and John present it. As the editor of the book states in the forward, keep your mind open as you read because the authors are more often then not doing what they're describing. You'll want to read it with your eyes open - sometimes more easily said then done, since what the authors are doing is often presented in hypnotically engaging language. I've talked to more than one person who kept finding themselves waking up a few hours after having read through a few pages in this book. It is best to read this book as you would a novel, continuing through to the end, rather than trying to figure out or understand an individual section before moving on. The material is written is such a way as to resolve itself as you read. This is an example of "nested loops" a teaching technique Bandler and Grinder use extensively. However you get through it, in the end you'll find your thinking about thinking changed, and the journey as well worthwhile as the destination. As they say themselves, this book has nothing to do with theory or even the truth about things - instead it's "all about what works."
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